East Bengal win seventh NFL title

East Bengal beat Vasco Sports Club, Goa, 4-0 to lift the seventh National Football League title in Kolkata on Friday.

updated: February 25, 2007 09:48 IST
  • Total Shares


Brazilian Douglas De silva emerged the hero with a spectacular brace as East Bengal breezed past Vasco Sports Club, Goa, 4-0 to lift the seventh National Football League title here today. Man-of-the-match Douglas brought the sizeable crowd into raptures netting a classic goal in the first half, and added another soon after the breather, before substitute S Malswamtluanga put the issue beyond the Goans with an opportunistic strike. Nigerian Mike Okoro piled on the misery for the Goans by scoring the fourth goal in the dying minutes of the fast-paced entertaining match at the Salt Lake stadium. What was expected to be a close match between the league leaders and their sole challengers, turned into a one-sided affair after the breather when East Bengal literally toyed with their opponents, carrying out waves of attacks into the rival citadel. Vasco, who began well, gaining midfield control, looked completely lost in the second half, as speedy teenager Malswamtluanga played havoc with the Goan defence, creating one chance after another with nippy runs from the right flank. East Bengal, who needed only one point to assure themselves of the crown, ended the day pushing their points tally to 49 from 21 matches. Vasco, who saw their title hopes dashed, are on 40 points from 21 outings. Vasco seized midfield control early in the match, but their much-vaunted strike-force failed to deliver, with the lethal Marcos Pereira being policed to submission by East Bengal's Suley Musah. The home side attacked from the right, as right back Surya Bikash Chakraborty did a good job, launching into constant overlaps to feed the upfronters. In the 12th minute, Chakraborty moved into the box and centred, but Franky Barreto cut it off by putting the ball out for a corner. Alvito D'cunha's flag kick from the right came to Douglas off Venkatesh, and the Brazilian flung himself in the air and let go a snap back-volley, which zoomed into the goal, giving no chance to the opponent goal keeper Rogerio Ramos, and triggering joyous scenes in the galleries. A delirious Douglas took off his shirt and waved to join in the celebrations, but Thai referee Panya Hanlumyaunt was not amused and flashed the yellow card at the Brazilian. Leading 1-0 at the breather, East Bengal consolidated their position in the second half, as Douglas headed home a Chandan Das corner. Malswamtluanga, who came in place of D'cunha in the second half, made the scoreline 3-0 in the 67th minute when he latched on to an angular centre from Suryabikash Chakraborty and unleashed a powerful right footer which went in. With Vasco players giving up for all practical purposes and only going through the motions, Malswamtluanga once again schemed from the right and essayed a measured centre, which Nigerian Okoro followed well and nodded in. (PTI)